“I have plenty of hope for both Via Africa and Banaadeer,” Mike de Kock said after the stable’s top sprinters finished out of the frame in Saturday’s Gr3 Meydan Sprint over 1000m on turf.
Banaadeer and Via Africa were beaten just 1.50 and 1.75-lengths respectively in a high quality line-up and Mike reflected: “If you look at the result, both actually ran very well and weren’t in the least disgraced.”
The pair arrived from South Africa late in 2014 and while Banaadeer was fully fit for the race, Mike feels he’d be a better horse next season. “Banaadeer has some maturing to do and he’s fared well in three international starts. He’s going to be a better horse at four and I believe he will show his worth over 1200m.”
Via Africa: Shows heart and could be a serious runner on DWC night.
Via Africa arrived in the UAE late in 2014 and this was her first start in 10 months. She paced it out well with her male rivals before weakening a bit going into the last 250m, but she picked it up again in the last 100m and ran through to the line.
Mike commented: “I really liked the way Via Africa fought on when it looked all over. She held the bit and stayed on competitively after being matched for pace, perhaps for the first time ever. She will improve massively with this run, I’d say at least by the margin she was beaten. I am confident she can finish in the first four on Dubai World Cup night.”
Mike thanked Via Africa’s part-owner Andre Hauptfleisch for attending the meeting, saying: “Andre flew out here to support his runner, he enjoyed the experience and he and Albert Boshoff can be proud of her performance.”